This tutorial review first details the uncontrolled microemulsion polymerization mechanism, and the RAFT polymerization mechanism to provide the necessary background for examining the RAFT microemulsion polymerization mechanism. The effect of the chain transfer agent per micelle ratio and the chain transfer agent aqueous solubility on the RAFT microemulsion polymerization kinetics, polymer molecular weight and polydispersity, and polymer nanoparticle size are discussed with a focus on oil-in-water microemulsions. Modeling of RAFT microemulsion polymerization kinetics and the resulting final polymer molecular weight are presented to assist with the analysis of observed experimental trends. Lastly, the current significance of RAFT microemulsion polymerization and the future directions are discussed.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/jennifer_heinen/2/